The IRS reminded taxpayers to beware of IRS impersonation scams and protect their personal and financial information. These schemes can involve text message scams, phone scams, and e-mail schemes. The IRS also warned taxpayers against unemployment fraud. Several steps were taken to protect taxpayers from these scams. Other than IRS Secure Access, the Service does not use text messages to discuss personal tax issues. The IRS will not send taxpayer messages via social media platforms.

Further, the IRS warned workers against claims of unemployment or other benefit payments for which they never applied. States have experienced a rise in fraudulent unemployment claims filed using stolen identities. States issue Form 1099-G, Certain Government Payments, to recipients and to the IRS to report the amount of taxable compensation received and any withholding. Workers receive a fraudulent Form 1099-G should report the fraud to state agencies. Details on how to report fraud to state workforce agencies can be found on the U.S. Department of Labor’s website. The IRS also listed the situations in which individuals may be victims of unemployment identity theft.

The IRS informed taxpayers that the agency does not initiate contact with them by email to request personal or financial information. The IRS initiates most contacts through regular mail delivered by the U.S. Postal service. Taxpayers can report fraudulent emails related to the IRS by sending them as an attachment to phishing@irs.gov. More details are available on the IRS website.